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Government Contractor Offers Million Dollar Bounty for Tor 0-Days

A cybersecurity company has offered bounties of up to 1 million US dollars for Tor Browser 0-day vulnerabilities. Zerodium’s Tor 0-day bounty program is open until November 30th at 6pm Eastern, or until Zerodium terminates the program after having issued 1 million dollars for Tor 0-days. The company has stated that it plans to sell these zero day exploits to government agencies, such as law enforcement agencies. In the United States, zero day exploits have been hoarded and used by intelligence agencies such as the NSA and the CIA. Earlier this year the government dropped charges against child pornography suspects when the FBI decided to not disclose a zero day exploit it was using against the Tor network.

“While Tor network and Tor Browser are fantastic projects that allow legitimate users to improve their privacy and security on the internet, the Tor network and browser are, in many cases, used by ugly people to conduct activities such as drug trafficking or child abuse. We have launched this special bounty for Tor Browser zero-days to help our government customers fight crime and make the world a better and safer place for all,” Zerodium writes in their FAQ for the Tor 0-Day Bounty program. Zero day vulnerabilities that would require “control or manipulation of Tor nodes” as well as “exploits/attacks that would cause disruption of legitimate use of the Tor network” will not be accepted by Zerodium.

The exploit must be capable of being deployed through a simple web page, and must attack the current stable release and experimental release of the Tor Browser. The exploit must not require any interaction from a victim, other than getting them to load the infected web page. The company is looking for zero day exploits that affect the Tor Browser in its highest security setting, with JavaScript disabled, as well as zero day exploits which affect the Tor Browser in its default low security setting, where JavaScript is enabled. The exploits Zerodium is looking for must allow the attacker to remotely execute code and allow the attacker to gain the same privileges as the user account or allow the attacker to gain unrestricted root privileges. Exploits which require the victim to interact with a popup message, or to download and open a document are not eligible under the million dollar bounty program, but Zerodium claims they reserve the right to make separate financial offers to hackers and security researchers who are offering such exploits.

Zero day exploits which work on both Tails 3 and Windows 10, allow remote code execution as well as local privilege escalation, and can function under Tor’s highest security settings with JavaScript disabled can fetch up to $250,000 US dollars. Zero days which work on both Tails and Windows 10 but only allow remote code execution under Tor’s highest security setting can fetch up to $185,000 US dollars. Zero day exploits which allow remote code execution and local privilege escalation under Tor’s highest security setting, but only work on one operating system, such as only on Windows 10 or only on Tails 3. Zero day exploits which function under Tor’s lowest security setting, which allows the execution of JavaScript, can fetch anywhere from $75,000 to $125,000 US dollars. The company intends to keep accepting zero day exploits for Tor even after their million dollar bounty program ends.

The bounties will be paid through bank transfers or through Bitcoin. The company is specifically looking for exploits that work on Tor running on Tails 3.x or Windows 10. Earlier this year Zerodium introduced a half a million US dollar bounty for 0-day exploits for encrypted messaging apps Signal, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, that allow for remote code execution and local privilege escalation. In July of this year the Tor Project itself launched their own bug bounty program. Late last year a zero day exploit for the Tor Browser was being used to de-anonymize users. That exploit was said to be nearly identical to a zero day exploit deployed by the FBI against Tor users in 2013.

15 comments

  1. They claim their reason behind this is to only help law agencies catch the bad actors. Once the exploits are out there, however, it can be used against any and all Tor users. Their only motivation is power of control which Tor prevents by leveling the playing field.

    If I had exploits, even a billion dollars would not convince me to sell them to this wretched company – they would go directly to the Tor project for free.

    • Aussie pub brawler

      exactly!
      the price of freedom apropos the Dark Web is that the ‘ugly’ people must have the same level of secure access as the politically correct ‘freedom fighters’ or what-ever you want to call them!

  2. The the commentor above: Amen.

  3. Government Contractor means they provided logistical work to allow the imposition of tyranny on a larger scale
    THAT IS ALL THING MORE

  4. There is NOTHING more IMMORAL than MORALS. Morals are used to justify all the conduct MORALS are supposed to stop humanity from pursuing.
    If anyone thinks that people should be HARMED in some manner because of MORALITY, those people should be ignored, laughed at and not sexed, as they are FOOLS

  5. Huh,I believe the U.S. government used that exact excuse back in the early 2000s and since. If you find any I assure you that users of tor will fix all issues as it is open source. In other words come at is fuckers!

  6. here’s an idea:
    my 8 step plan:

    1.Find an exploit
    2.Tell tor community devs
    3.Tell them to fix it but wait.
    4.When they have a fix, sell exploit to this company
    5.Collect money
    6.Warn tor devs they can install the fix
    7.Give money to tor devs
    8.Eat a cake

    • vtrqtvvi7/6*+qwerty

      so fucking right men!

    • Lil Girl

      That has to be the funniest shit i have ever heard, but oh so true… Let’s all eat cake. The thing is bad people are always going to be everwhere although i don’t condone child abuse, if a guy is looking at pictures and not an actual child at that moment then so be it. You may say, but a child is being victimized but you are wrong. A child had been victimized and weather that guy looks at that pic or not the status will not change one bit. The only thing that changes is instead of getting his rocks off to an actual child it is a pic. Now lets weigh this out a real child or a pic which can you live with more? And let’s not go to the being civilized thing because for eon’s children have been molested and hurt (Thats two different things) and it was never talked about, those familes are some of the happiest i have ever seen. It was not until we started telling the children that they had been hurt that they have become hurt. Case in point, I personally know a family where the uncle (which it almost always is) was molesting a girl from the age of two. The child enjoyed everything she was doing and he never once hurt that child. when the child was eight he was caught by a friend of the family and that friend and the parents shell shocked this child so bad that she did not know which way was up. They told her how bad what she had done was but yet it was not her fault? They hated her beloved uncle who had brought her nothing but love and pleasure. They would not let her talk to him or even mention his name. she was so heartbroken she wanted to kill herself. Why? because nobody cared how she felt but everyone was horrified over something she thought no more about than she did about waking up in the morning. Everyone felt sorry for her and always wanted to talk about what had happened but all it did was make her uncomfortable and not want to be around anyone but her uncle because he was the only person who she knew would just hug her and love her and not cause all the chaos.
      By now you mabye think I’m a pedophile? No I’m the little girl who’s life got turned upside down and all i wanted was for everyone to leave me alone, so yes i do know both sides of a story. True there are sick fucks who hurt children out there, i to this day visit my uncle at least once a week. when i turned 17 i left home and found him and we get along great and love each other very much. No we are not a couple (sorry to dissapoint some of you) but he loves me very much as i do him no thanks to the rest of my family and their friends. Again that is not always the case but if someone is not hurting a child whatever.
      People need to get facts before they make decisions, today if someone on facebook or whatever says something it becomes law. Even when there is no base for it. Do you know what makes the government and it’s leeches the most money? FEAR and the fact that they are the only ones that can protect you. Wake up people and quit being the sheep the government knows you are. How do they know you are? Thats the only way they have a job…….

    • D.S.A.

      This idea times a googleplex. Kudos.

    • I think I agree 100% with the fella. Lol. Amen to that.

    • destined soldier

      Exactly what i would do

    • zerodium bounty probably includes nda.
      And if were them, i would pay out the bounty over time.

  7. The real motivations are surely not mentioned. That’s too easy to give “child porn” as an argument.

  8. A million dollar you say :D?

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